Hello everyone, I’m Steve Horwitz, Professor of Economics at St. Lawrence University in Canton, NY. I did my PhD work at George Mason University, the home of the Mercatus Center where I am a Senior Affiliated Scholar today. I am also a Distinguished Fellow at the Foundation for Economic Education, a Senior Fellow at the Fraser Institute in Canada, and I’m currently serving as a Visiting Scholar at the John H. Schnatter Institute for Entrepreneurship and Free Enterprise at Ball State University.

I’ve written three books, Monetary Evolution, Free Banking, and Economic Order (1992), Microfoundations and Macroeconomics: An Austrian Perspective (2000), and Hayek’s Modern Family: Classical Liberalism and the Evolution of Social Institutions (2015). I also write regularly for Bleeding Heart Libertarians and FEE.org.

My work has focused on monetary theory, macroeconomics from an Austrian perspective, the economics of gender, and the family as a social institution.

My recent article for FEE.org, “There is No Such Thing as Trickle-Down Economics” made the front page at /r/Economics, /r/Politics, and ultimately the front page of Reddit.

Several years ago, my video with Learn Liberty exploring the gender earnings gap, “Do Women Earn Less than Men?” made the front page of /r/Libertarian, leading the video to go viral. I wrote about the ensuing controversy here.

Ask me anything about economics, the gender earnings gap, the role of the family as a social institution, “bleeding heart libertarianism,” or any other aspects of my work you find interesting. I look forward to your questions!

EDIT: Thank you for your questions everybody! I was asked to devote 90 minutes to this conversation, so I am now concluding the AMA. If anyone has a question that I was not able to get to, feel free to follow me over to /r/LearnLiberty where I’ll continue taking questions for a half-hour of “overtime.”

Comments: 372 • Responses: 58  • Date: 

SteveHorowitz37 karma

I've spent years representing strawman versions of your views. Will you fight me IRL?

sghorwitz87 karma

Bring it on Horowitz. Bring it on. That extra 'o' slows you down in a good fight.

tinyphilosopher30 karma

What do you make of many in the economics profession and academia, such as many on /r/badeconomics disparagement of Austrian economics as being "dogmatic" or "fundamentalist"? What would you say the most popular misconception of Austrian economics as a discipline is?

sghorwitz50 karma

I think the most common misconception is that it's just "ideology" - that it is no different from libertarianism. It isn't helped when people use the term "austro-libertarianism." Austrian economics is as old as modern economics, dating to the marginal revolution in 1871, and is a form of value-free social analysis. Unfortunately, too many economists think math and related models are the only kind of "science" or rigorous thinking. They're wrong as the history of economics and other disciplines demonstrate.

Folks might also want to see this https://www.cato-unbound.org/2012/09/05/steven-horwitz/empirics-austrian-economics

Snorrrlax21 karma

Hi Steve,

Would you be interested in posting any view you hold to /r/changemyview? We're trying to promote healthy discussion and popular figures would definitely help with this.

sghorwitz17 karma

Yes, possibly. Contact me by email/fb or something and we'll talk.

Contrarianatbirth18 karma

I am a college administrator. How do I convince my colleagues that the Koch brothers aren't evil bastards bent on destroying academic liberty?

sghorwitz33 karma

I wish I had the magic bullet.

I think the best things you can do are:

  1. Point them to Charles's own writings on these issues where his whole argument is that he wants to expand the conversation and give more people the opportunity to have their views in the mix. Reading Polanyi's "The Republic of Science" with them might help.

  2. Be a role model. Demonstrate your own commitment to academic freedom and the central role of faculty.

  3. Don't take grants that give the Kochs or any other outside donor control over hiring or curriculum.

  4. Share the work of high-quality libertarian scholars and let your colleagues judge for themselves.

  5. Given them examples of programs at other schools, esp. something like Ross Emmett's at Michigan State, that have broad reading lists and are gettin gstudents engaged in ideas and writing about them.

william458reddit14 karma

Prof. Horwitz, what do you think of Scott Sumner's claim that monetary policy is the right's Achilles heel? Given his response, what is the Austrian answer? I am not saying you or Austrians are part of the "right". I am assuming he meant people who favour tight money in general.

sghorwitz24 karma

I think it is to the extent, as Cory asked below, free market types are seen as not having an answer to the Great Depression. Monetary theory is also REALLY complex and hard and explaining policy to a lay audience is challenging. Explaning why depressions happen and how to "cure" them, with their focus on money, is indeed one of our biggest challenges.

I tried to break down monetary policy for non-specialists here:


J-B_Say12 karma

Do you #FeelTheJohnson?

sghorwitz62 karma

Not in public anyway.

ReginaldLADOO10 karma

What are your thoughts on the "free stuff" economy? By free stuff I mean things that you should be paying for, but can get for free online. Illegally downloading music, movies, porn, etc.

Edit: I don't understand how porn is even being made still. Hardly anyone buys porn these days when anything you can imagine is 1 click away. And yet there are still endless amounts of porn being produced. I don't get it.

sghorwitz14 karma

I'm a fan. :)

I think we are moving more and more to a world in which the pressure to provide things "free" in that way will be ubiquitous.

econ_learner9 karma

Hi Steve, what do you think of Claudia Goldin's work on the gender wage gap? Also, do you think that changing the workplace to be more time-flexible, either within the day, or mandating parental leave, would be effective in decreasing the wage gap where it appears?

sghorwitz26 karma

Everyone who is interested in the gap, or female labor force participation, or anything else about gender and labor markets should read Goldin. I hope she gets a Nobel eventually.

More time flexible schedules would reduce the gap I think as it would enable parents to more equally distribute responsibilities at home. Mandating parental leave won't, as women will likely still take more and that will affect their wages.

I think the long-run solution is for men and women's human capital to continue to converge and for the responsibility for child-raising to become more equal. I also think the ability to make real money working from home will help a lot too, as it enables parents to work and deal with kids at the same time, and equalizes the gender playing field.

Best, most accessible, Goldin piece here: http://scholar.harvard.edu/goldin/publications/quiet-revolution-transformed-womens-employment-education-and-family

iron_____dan7 karma

Dr. Horwitz, thank you for doing this.

What would you say are the top 3 must read books for people interested in Libertarianism?

What do you think are the most common misconceptions people have about Libertarianism?

sghorwitz25 karma

Oh this is a nearly impossible question. :)

I'm going to go with the more academic books: Hayek's Constitution of Liberty; Nozick's Anarchy, State, and Utopia; and more obscure one: Chris Sciabarra's Marx, Hayek, and Utopia.

But really, there are so many, including Mark Pennington's recent Robust Political Economy that are worth reading.


  1. We are pro-business or in favor of anything that benefits corporations

  2. We think people are only greedy or selfish

  3. We think everything is solved by the market in the narrow sense.

Those are three good ones anyway.

Internal_Security7 karma

Hey Dr. Horwitz. First question, are you going to SEA this year? If so, I hope to see you there!

Second question: If there was one economic idea you could explain to everyone on earth, what would it be?

sghorwitz23 karma

Yes, I'll be at the SEAs.

The idea that prices are knowledge surrogates. Prices aren't mere numbers - they are form of communication that goes beyond language and math. Without them, we are blind and deaf in figuring out how to make choices and allocate resources. It is the price system that enables us to be as rational as we are and is a key part of what McCloskey calls "The Great Betterment."

thabonch6 karma

Is gold money?

sghorwitz21 karma

In general? Today?

It's not really money today as no one uses it as commonly accepted medium of exchange, but it can be and should be.

Instahayek5 karma

You've said before that you (and many others at George Mason) don't consider yourselves Austrian economists but are nevertheless have a bent towards the Austrian tradition. What are you then? An entirely new school of it (Mercatus School of Economics)?

Follow up question: what influence, if any, has Alfred Schutz has had on your economics or philisophy in general?

sghorwitz13 karma

I think that many of us are now using Virginia Political Economy to recognize the combined influence of Austrian economics and public choice economics. Hayek meets Buchanan. And then throw in the Bloomington School (Ostrom) and you have the framework for understanding human action adn its unintended consequences in the realms: markets (Hayek), politics (Buchanan), communities/civil society (Ostrom).

I like VPE as a label myself, esp. given the influence public choice had on the Ostroms.

dumbanimal5 karma

Hello Professor Horwitz. Thank you for doing this AMA.

Do you feel more optimistic or pessimistic about the direction America is headed in?

sghorwitz9 karma

I'm a short-run pessimist (even without this election) and a long-run optimist. My kids and grandkids will live better than I have.

sskwire4 karma

I like all the people asking you for favorite theories/books/authors?

Who/what/which is your least favorite?

sghorwitz43 karma

Well Robert Reich would be up there as I find him not only consistently wrong but horrifically smug.

Posner's book on the financial crisis (A Failure of capitalism I think) was truly awful, mostly because he should know better.

And I still find Keynes a struggle to read.

By contrast, I have no problem reading Marx. I love to teach Marx too. He was brilliantly wrong.

Contrarianatbirth4 karma

Steve, The FED inevitably will raise interest rates. 1) What will be the impact on those of us who have money in the market? 2) What is the proper role of the government in monetary policy?

sghorwitz26 karma

Downvote for using "FED" not Fed. :)

As for 1), if I knew, I wouldn't be doing an AMA, I'd be off making tons of money investing.

It's proper role is not different than it's proper role in anything else: at most, setting and enforcing general rules and the rule of law. I say at most because it's an odd numbered day today, therefore I'm an anarchist. :)

joepyeweed4 karma

What's the market like for Economics PhD's right now?

sghorwitz8 karma

I'm not the best person to ask as I don't have grad students. My sense is that it's pretty good as the undergraduate major is in high demand.

MinneLover4 karma

Thank you for this AMA Professor Horwitz. As an avid reader and a huge fan of yours, can you convince me that Murray Rothbard was anything more than a loon or a charlatan?

As someone with a background in theoretical Economics and history of the Economic thought I can't really help it. Everytime it feels like he's just knowingly telling lies about what "mainstream economists" believe. EDIT: that, and the sectarian way of thinking i. e. anyone from JS Mill to Milton Friedman is a "socialist".

Thank you

sghorwitz11 karma

He was neither a loon nor a charltan. He was wrong about a lot, but I wouldn't be here if it weren't for his vision of a free society, and to some extent his economics. The problem was that his narrow economic work was never really tested by the peer review process, rather it was a matter of reception by libertarian true believers. It allowed him to be sloppy in ways that someone like, say, Kirzner (or Boettke now) can't be.

Read him, but read him with a huge grain of salt. Let him be a way to test whether you like stuff because of your libertarian priors or because it's good economics.

Imagineallthepeeps3 karma

Do you think that Manufacturing will ever return to the United States?

sghorwitz12 karma

Manufacturing never went away. We manufacture as much or more than ever these days https://fred.stlouisfed.org/series/OUTMS

Manufacturing job have fallen of course, but that's good news. Why use labor in manufacturing if we don't need it? That labor can be "released" to other more valuable areas, which is exactly what has happened. It's also what DID happen when agricultural productiivty rose and former farmers became... manufacturing workers.

jacobjtl3 karma

What are your thoughts on a Negative Income Tax or a Universal Basic Income to replace our current 1trillion dollar welfare system?

sghorwitz2 karma

See a question below.

TLJG3 karma

Hello Dr. Horwitz, thank you for this AMA.

What do you think of the austrian studies outside Economy?

Why they feel so behind in comparison with the Economy studies?

sghorwitz3 karma

Do you mean applying Austrian ideas to non-economic areas? I'm a big fan, having written a whole book on Hayek and the Modern Family. :)

I think it's harder because the libertarian intellectual movement is still very much an economics driven one and it's easier to get jobs and publications in that area.

econstudent53 karma

Why aren't you a fan of Tom Woods? What about Robert Murphy?

sghorwitz9 karma

I don't agree with Tom's understanding of Austrian economics and he's generally behaved like a jerk with respect to me.

I'm a Bob Murphy fan.

aubrey19873 karma

I became a libertarian by first being a republican then reading libertarian scholars in college. For people without my starting inclinations and who don't ha e interest in reading those kind of books, how do we trigger conversions to libertarianism?

sghorwitz8 karma

With patience. It doesn't happen at once, as you know. We keep talking to people and we pick our battles. We don't try to turn people into anarcho-capitalists in one conversation. Don't fight over the roads when you can get them to agree about occupational licensure or corporate welfare. Don't given them a reading list right away, unless it's something specific and short.

And don't think about this as a "conversion" but a conversation.

sloppyjoes73 karma

I've always argued for a free and open economy. When I've talked about Austrian economics, on Reddit, replies will say that Austrian economics is a "debunked" theory that "no economist actually believes any more."

How should I respond to people who argue that no respectable person believes this stuff?

sghorwitz8 karma

sources, sources, sources.

There is an organization of professional economists the Society for the Development of Austrian Economics with over 100 members and that has sessions at professional meetings. There are dozens of tenure Austrian econ profs at all kinds of schools. They have written hundreds of professional articles that have passed the peer review process. Peter Boettke is the president of the Southern Economic Association. I could go on. AE is alive an well in professional economics.

reyismywife3 karma

Hi Steve! I was lucky enough to hear you speak at TCU about your book "Hayek's Modern Family," and have used one of your quotes often after that: "What did more for the betterment of women - The right to vote or the invention of the dishwasher?"

With that said - what do you think is the next step that needs to be taken for women's equality, and do you think third-wave feminism is helping get us there?

sghorwitz2 karma

The next step will likely have to be made by men in taking on more responsibility for the household, especially children. If we want to close the gender wage gap, that's one way to do it.

Not electing Trump would help too :)

rroseannadanna3 karma

The idea of a universal basic income (in it's various forms) was fundamental towards making me believe that libertarianism was marketable to the general American population. Anecdotally, when I discuss it with my friends on the left, they also love it and have never, ever heard of it. So questions on this topic:

I have lots of questions but maybe answer one or two that you find most interesting?

  1. Is this idea originally from Hayek? It's in LLL, but was it around before him?

  2. Why do you think Johnson isn't selling this concept? He seems to support it. The idea that you give people money and they buy their own health care, college education, housing, seems to appeal to a wide range of voters.

  3. How would the basic income adapt for people who have more expensive needs? I'm thinking for example, of people who have severe medical issues. The "basic" income wouldn't be sufficient.

  4. Do you think that the idea is actually possible in America? Or would it end up twisted by rent-seeking like everything else?

  5. Obviously, some people will choose not to work with a basic income. Do you think the problem would be worse than under our current welfare system?

sghorwitz9 karma

Just some quick thoughts on this:

It's in LLL but it's also, I think, in Constitution of Liberty as well, at least the idea that people who cannot participate in the "game" of the market should get some sort of minimum.

I do think it would be ripe for rent-seeking and as several folks have argued, it's doubtful for public choice reasons that politicians would trade out the existing system for a UBI.

That said, if that DID happen, I think we'd have a much better situation than the status quo. Not perfect of course, but better. Yes, there'd be some negative incentives of a UBI, but not nearly the ones we have now, working at cross-purposes and destroying families. etc.

Varvaro2 karma

Hi Professor Horwitz,
I graduated last year with a bachelors in finance but have always had an interest in economics, more specifically that of the Austrian school as a Libertarian myself. Over the past years and into the future do you see the school becoming more respected/main-stream in the overall field of economics?

sghorwitz11 karma

There have never been more Austrian school economists alive and practicing at one time in history than there are now. People are getting jobs and tenure. If you go to one of the programs where you can really learn it rigorously (GMU, WVU, Texas Tech etc), you will get a job and your work will be respected.

zoink2 karma

Have you noticed a rise in alt-right narratives (e.g. vitriolic ant-leftism, "race-realism") in libertarian circles?

If so do you think this is causing long term damage?

I have and I could see it causing long term damage but on the other hand it could lead more caustic elements to abandon the libertarian moniker.

sghorwitz8 karma

Yes I have and it's terrible and embarrassing.

automaschine2 karma

I think a lot of libertarians I meet lose arguments because of the facets of "libertarianism" they focus on while debating. I often find myself reaching a logic argument about coercion, comparing relative wealth in the US with the poorest around the globe, reaching "privatize everything!", or something else along those lines that comes across as very 'purist'. I'm not saying these are all wrong, but they come across as silly or irrelevant to most of my peers. I much prefer chatting with "Bleeding Heart Libertarians" who can at least share sympathy in acknowledging some validity to progressive arguments.

So, two questions: (1) how has your personal version of "BHL" evolved in the past few years, as Black Lives Matter, equality for trans people, 'white privilege' acknowledgement, and other "left-wing" movements have grown to reach the mainstream?

..and (2) how can the BHL movement save us from the eternal bickering of 'libertarians' and 'progressives'? Thanks.

sghorwitz7 karma

Love this question.

I think that BHL types (and libertarians in general) should be qualified supporters of all of those things in your first question. Equality for trans folks being the most obvious and without qualification. BLM is trickier as libertarians have long noted the racism and brutality of the cops, but we would have big problems with some of their proposed solutions, esp. to the extent it's been captured by socialists.

And I think we can carefully acknowledge the language of privilege. But I also think we can expand it to talk about state-granted privilege. After all, things like occupational licensure do way more damage to non-whites (and poor whites, who often get forgotten in this discussion) than white privilege talk.

I don't know if BHL can "save us," but it can enable us to talk mroe productively with the left if we recognize the legitimacy of many of their concerns and the ways in which we share goals, but also talk civilly with them about how best to achieve them.

baggytheo2 karma

Hi Professor Horwitz,

Was the title of your most recent book inspired by the popular sitcom, "Modern Family"? Are you a fan of the show?

sghorwitz3 karma

the publisher picked it and for tha treason. I like the show but I'm not a huge fan

econstudent52 karma

Thanks for doing this Dr. Horwitz. What do you think of Piketty's book? I know you probably don't like the wealth tax but what do you think of analysis?

sghorwitz16 karma

Here's me on Piketty: http://www.coordinationproblem.org/2015/01/horwitz-on-piketty.html

it's video lecture.

Your better bets for Piketty criticisms are McCloskey's long review and any thing by Bob Murphy and/or Phil Magness on the book. I endorse them all.

fatalconceit19292 karma

Do you think there is any future for the much-derided hermeneutic vein of Austrian econ, or perhaps a better term is "interpretive" vein of Austrian econ, started by Don Lavoie, or is it better to let that debate rest?

sghorwitz2 karma

I don't want to return to that old nasty debate. I think to some extent the good ideas of that project have been incorporated into AE these days and we have left behind the excesses and errors. I think I (we?) were a bit naive back then but that we have it closer to right these days.

Someone asked earlier about Schutz. There's a good example of an interpretive thinker who we can and should do more with. He influenced Mises and is very compatible with Hayek. Folks should read Roger Koppl's work on this.

revocer2 karma

Often times Austrians get criticized for their analytical methods. Why is he Austrian method better than Classical, Neoclassical, Keynesian, Chicago, or Public Choice methods? Are there any significant differences in terms of method?

sghorwitz2 karma

AGain, this is a book.

There's an earlier question with a link to my Cato Unbound essay on Austrian methodology. The short answer is that realism of assumptions matters. If we build theories populated by agents who are not recognizably human, we will get an understanding of economics that doesn't work for actual humans.

We are not billiard balls on a frictionless plane. The way to study humans is different from the way to study inanimate objects. Modoern economics treats us as the latter, to its failure.

Contrarianatbirth1 karma

Currently, who is the most enlightened and articulate "libertarian" in your opinion? Someone self identified libertarians should follow on Facebook?

sghorwitz7 karma

Well the answer to the first is David Schmidtz, but he's not on Facebook in any real way.

I'm a huge fan of Don Boudreaux and Deidre McCloskey, but neither are big FB users. If you don't follow Jacob T. Levy on Facebook, you should.

CoryMassimino1 karma

Why do you think monetary disequilibrium theory hasn't caught on more with both Austrian economists and mainstream economists? What can be done to change the common perception that the true Austrian approach to recessions is merely "doing nothing," letting any and all deflation "run its course"?

sghorwitz5 karma

I think it's doing better than it used to as the Market Monetarists are also working from that broad approach. I think part of it is that it's, like so much else, tough to model in the ways the mainstream values (wrongly). I do think it's more common among Austrians too - the younger Larry White students are working from that tradition.

As for the second, we need to keep reinforcing the argument that monetary equilibrium is the goal and that letting deflation run its course is a disaster, as we saw in the 30s.

stw121 karma

With the impending financial crisis what steps can a person take to protect his wealth? Is gold a good option or is there something you see as a better from of financial security?

sghorwitz5 karma

If I knew, I'd be rich.

Swerthing1 karma

What is the best way to advance the ideas of liberty?

sghorwitz7 karma

To make good, clear arguments with high-quality evidence, presented in calm, well-constructed, written and spoken form that unambiguously demonstrate our commitment to creating a better world for all, and especially the least well off among us.

punkthesystem1 karma

Broad question: What, if any, implications do behavioral economics have for the Austrian school? What has the relationship been, and what should it be from your perspective?

sghorwitz7 karma

Great question. I have an article coming out in Economic Affairs from the IEA on exactly this topic later this month.

Here's some earlier thoughts: http://www.coordinationproblem.org/2010/09/agent-failure-and-market-failure.html

The short version is this: behavioral econ shows us that, empirically, we are not homo economicus. Austrians have always known that. Humans are bumbling, stumbling, masses of imperfection with limited knowledge and all kinds of cognitive biases. So BE is helpful in providing the empirical evidence of that.

The question is: so what? For some BE folks, those imperfections are an ipso facto case for government intervention just like "market failure." Not for Austrians. Following Vernon Smith we are interested in understanding how human social institutions enable us to learn from each other and overcome those "failures" and general mutually beneficial interactions that better us all.

BE helps us understand the "problem situation" of human action, but Virginia Political Economy provides the answer for how we overcome it.

IOW: you don't destroy the case for markets by destroying the fiction of homo economicus.

jacobjtl0 karma

Do you think geolibertarianism would

1) work better than our current system 2)be palatable to the general population?

sghorwitz3 karma

You're going to have to give me a specific definition of that term.

CoryMassimino0 karma

What, if anything, does Mises get wrong that Hayek gets right and vice versa?

Who is the most underrated economist by Austrian/VPE types? By mainstream types?

sghorwitz4 karma

Oh man Cory.... the first one is a book. :) Let me tackle the second:

I am a huge fan of Leland Yeager and William Hutt. Both are hugely underappreciated by VPE types and they were VPE folks! As for non-VPE economists who are underappreciated...here's a radical choice - Ben Bernanke. His professional work is really good, despite his mistakes as Fed chair. Another is Axel Leijonhufvud.

Not sure who mainstream types underappreciate... actually Buchanan, despite his Nobel. His contributions are so profound and important, yet public choice is far from central in the way it should be.

MinneLover0 karma

Thanks for this AMA!

What do you think about Acemoglu's & Robinson's quantitative research on Institutions and/or their opus, Why Nations Fail?

sghorwitz7 karma

I think there's some good stuff in there, but McCloskey raises excellent criticisms in volumes 2 and 3 of the Bourgeois trilogy. They are overly focused on institutions and perhaps not enough on what Deirdre calls "habits of the lip." Well worth reading though.

StevenTheSloth0 karma

You a fan of tom woods and would you ever consider being in his show? He is the clearest libertarian thinker we have in the movement I believe!

sghorwitz12 karma

I'm not a fan and the odds of Tom inviting me on his show are about the same as Donald Trump getting an invite to speak at a meeting of sexual assault survivors.

ipkiss_stanleyipkiss0 karma

Did you watch the debate between David Friedman and Bob Murphy on Austrian vs. Chicago school? What are your thoughts on Friedman's criticisms and what is your opinion of D. Friedman in general?

sghorwitz2 karma

I have not watched that.

I like David and I like his work for the most part.

JakeShwartz72710 karma

Someone asked about the alt right ealrier so I wanted to ask what are your thoughts are on propertarianism and Curt Doolittle?

sghorwitz4 karma

All I know of him is that I blocked him on Facebook for being an alt-right idiot.

boona0 karma

Thank you for taking the time to answer questions.

What would you say are the core differences between your flavor of Austrian economics versus the Mises Institutes'? Why do you favor yours?

Jorelio-1 karma

Is Economics a science? Wouldn't public policy improve if we treated economics w/ as much reverence as climate science?

sghorwitz1 karma

It's a social science and should not be treated as if it were the natural sciences (which aren't really the "natural sciences" as we pretend they are).

Hayek got it right here: http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/economic-sciences/laureates/1974/hayek-lecture.html

idontdislikeoranges-1 karma

Does the world need rich and poor people?

sghorwitz3 karma

Need? The better question is "will a good society always have rich and poor?" Yes, at least in relative terms.

revocer-1 karma

If there was one thing you can change about the economics profession, what would that be?

sghorwitz2 karma

More methodological pluralism. Given Austrian arguments a chance instead of ruling them out apriori (so to speak) because there's no "formal model" or econometrics.

Itismefeu-1 karma

Broad question (maybe): could the marxian concept of fetichism satisfy the gap filled by the subjective theory of value and/or marginal theory? I don't believe so, but I've heard this argument before.

sghorwitz2 karma

You're going to have to explain the argument there as it's not obvious to me.

Brod2016-1 karma

Big fan Professor Horwitz!

Just wondering why you never responded to Tom Woods on his criticism of you regarding your column on the Austrian school?

sghorwitz3 karma

Because he is not worth my time, especially given the way he has treated me in the past. I'm simply not interested in conversation with people who behave that way.

aubrey1987-2 karma

I get lots of letters from you courtesy of the IHS.

We have lots of proponents of liberty in economics. What field are we missing people oin? Law, media, literature, politics, art, what?

sghorwitz1 karma

The humanities. We need more people dealing with literature, art, media, communications, and especially history.

We have plenty of economists, philosophers, law profs, and political theorists. :)

Reign_Wilson-2 karma


sghorwitz7 karma

There are only Keynesians in foxholes. :)

I think that in bad times, economic fallacies, especially ones that seem simple and that people (wrongly) believe worked historically, come back to the forefront. Even among professional economists, the Great Recession triggered a regression to Intermediate Macro of their youth, forgetting all of the advances since then.

"Recession?! spend! spend! Spend!"

haemaker-2 karma

Who are the REAL job creators?

sghorwitz3 karma

Entrepreneurs, but even there, it's not about creating jobs, but creating value.


abaniyos-3 karma

Why don't millennials take responsibilities like their parents or those from previous generations?

sghorwitz3 karma

Well it's probably over generalizing to say "all" millennials, so let's be careful. It just seems more common now than previously, though the majority of young people are still just fine.

I think parents are so afraid of anything negative happening to their kids that they cushion every blow, bailout every mistake, and generally prevent their kids from taking risks and accepting the consequences.

The result are young people who either:

a. won't take risks because they have no practice at it b. take excessive risks because they've been bailed out of every mistake

Reasonable moderate risk taking is the loser here and a free society needs that in its entrepreneurs and its social innovators.